Guerrilla Marketing Basics For the Small Business
Guerrilla marketing is a concept that many small business owners can get
on board with: it's a marketing system that relies on a very low budget
by using time, energy and imagination to create a successful marketing
campaign. It was created by Jay Conrad Levinson, who introduced the
concept in his 1984 book Guerrilla Marketing. Since then, the term has
also picked up the meaning of an aggressive, unconventional marketing
Guerrilla marketing is meant for the small business owner. Levinson had
the small business owner in mind when he wrote his book and came up with
guerrilla marketing techniques or "weapons," which are outlined in his
book. But Levinson also encourages small business owners to come up with
their own guerrilla weapons and gives the following seven-step process
for achieving success with guerrilla marketing.
1. Research. Don't just research your market. Research your target
audience, your product or service, your industry, your competitors and
even your media options. What's the best way to communicate with your
target audience? How does your product differ from others on the market?
The first place to start is on the Internet, by Googling your specific
product or service to see what comes up.
2. Next, you should write a benefits list. Round up the best minds in
your company along with a few customers and list benefits you give your
customers. It's best to include a few customers so you can get an outside
view. What you consider a key benefit, your customers might not even know
about! From your list of benefits, pick the one that's your competitive
advantage. That's the one you should talk about in your marketing
3. Select your weapons. You can find the 100 weapons (marketing tactics)
listed on Levinson's Web site (www.gmarketing.com) or you can pick up his
book, Guerrilla Marketing Weapons: 100 Affordable Marketing Methods for a
more in-depth look. Half of the weapons listed are free to implement.
After you've decided on your weapons, you prioritize them and assign them
to people to head them up. You also give yourself a launch date for each
one. Levinson states in an article that his "average client takes 18
months to launch an attack." Don't feel like you need to rush or that
you'll be behind if it takes you longer than a year.
4. Maintain the attack. You have to stick with your weapons and your
launch plans even if you aren't getting immediate results.
5. Keep track of your attack. Some of your weapons will work wonderfully
and others will bomb. You need to note which ones worked for you and
which ones didn't. Ask customers where they saw your marketing. Why they
did they come in?
6. Make a marketing calendar. Levinson goes into more detail, but
basically you chart your marketing efforts for a year and you grade the
results of each marketing effort. The good ones get As or Bs and the ones
that failed miserably get Fs. Your letterhead printing gained some notice
but your Post-It note printing didn't? Assign an A and an F,
respectively. Once the year is over, you keep the tactics that got As or
Bs and do those again the next year.
7. Next you create a marketing plan, based on steps one through six. And
that's all there is to it!
Of course, it isn't as simple as it sounds, but now you know the basics,
you can start your research!
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